Podcast listening is down as people work from home
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As millions of people work from home to slow the spread of the Covid-19 coronavirus, we’ve already seen shifts in behavior and spending, such as the booms in videoconferencing and online grocery shopping.
One thing people have seemingly been doing less, so far, is listening to podcasts — presumably with some connection to the fact that so many have suddenly stopped commuting to work.
In the US, weekly podcast audiences decreased 8% last week, on a week-over-week basis, after decreasing 2% the prior week, according to Podtrac, which analyzes podcast publisher data covering more than a billion downloads per month. Podcast consumption — both weekly downloads and audience size — is still up on the year, according to Podtrac. But the downward tick is noticeable.
Chart of the Day
Another data point: Last week, during the week, user sessions for the Overcast podcast app were down about 20% from recent normal levels, according to the app’s developer, Marco Arment, citing Apple’s analytics. But weekend usage, so far, seem unaffected, he says.
Zooming in a bit deeper, the audience for news podcasts has grown the most this year, according to Podtrac. This makes sense: As the coronavirus has come to dominate all facets of attention, traffic to news publishers has soared. Comedy, sports, society and culture, and true crime podcasts are doing relatively worse, Podtrac says.
Is this bad?
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